Editor’s Note: Hey there, OBS Friends! We just came through The Broken Way study together and our team loved it so much that we don’t want it to be over! We hope you finish strong this week! Remember: you have through tomorrow, March 11, to watch all the videos again. Jesus is so cool — we had no way of knowing months ago when we started conversations with Ann that we would follow her study with Rebekah Lyons’ You Are Free… but God knew…. We love how beautifully He has woven it all together. The two studies really do go hand-in-hand, from Brokenness to Freedom in Christ, and we know that this new study is going to be life-changing! Watch this video Ann recorded for us to introduce us to her friend and fellow teacher, Rebekah. ~ Laurie, Faith.Full
Ann’s Foreword to You Are Free
My Grandad told me a story once and that story became a light. A light that unlocks the dark and releases you into the land of a thousand suns.
Apparently, so the story went, there had been a tropical snake, longer than the length of a man, that wound its way up the stilts of a jungle cabana and slithered right into one unsuspecting woman’s kitchen.
That woman turned around, split the day with one blood-curdling scream, and flung herself outside wide-eyed. That’s about when a machete-wielding neighbor showed up, calmly walked into her kitchen, and sliced off the head of the reptilian thing.
The strange thing is that a snake’s neurology and blood flow make it such that a snake still slithers wild even after it’s been sliced headless.
For hours that woman stood outside, waiting.
And the body of the snake still rampaged on, thrashing hard against windows and walls, destroying chairs and table and all things good and home.
My Grandad turned to say it, and I can tell you, it felt like a proclamation of emancipation:
A snake can only wreak havoc until it accepts it has no head — that it’s actually dead.
The enemy of your soul can only wreak havoc in your life until you accept that it’s already dead — and you’re already free.
Be who you already are.
Be Free — because you already are free.
Your enemy is dead — so silence the lies in your head.
No enemy can’t imprison you — because your Savior empowers you.
Nothing can hold you in bondage — because you are held by Him.
Not one thing can hold you back — because His arms are holding you.
“Christ doesn’t say you can be or may be or will be free. He says you are free,” Rebekah’s words flame right here in these pages that are about to become a light, a key, in your very own hands.
I spent more than a month with Rebekah during the year this book, these words, grew like a flame in her heart. Together, we poured over Scripture in a kibbutz outside of Jerusalem; literally walked the Emmaus road under stars; and prayed for our hearts to burn within us, that we might recognize Christ whatever road he had us on; stood under an arching double rainbow in Colorado and boldly trusted God for all of his promises; got down on our knees, our faces, broke our hearts before the heart of God under a Rocky Mountain rain. What you hold in your hands isn’t an idea — it’s an incarnation. Rebekah has enfleshed this freedom and I’ve witnessed it firsthand: Rebekah’s freefall to fly has transformed her into a blazing harbinger of desperately needed reality: Be who you already are.
Is there a message that your soul needs more?
The greatest lie of the pit is that you have to prove yourself.
This is the lie that’s bound you and ripped your heart out in a million ways.
The greatest truth of Christ’s reality is that you are free — so live free. Be who you already are.
The snake’s dead — so silence the lies in your head.
And the glory of true freedom is?
You are always made free from something — to become free for something.
This is what the realest love does — it frees you from slavery and frees you for serving. From slavery to the dark to serving in the kingdom of light! From slavery to meaningless pain — to serving for the most meaningful purpose.
Bind yourself to Christ and you are free from everything else that binds.
Love always asks you to give up some freedoms to get the greatest freedoms of all: Security. Safety. Intimacy.
Freedom is not about doing whatever we want most — but the opportunity to do what is most Christlike.
Freedom is not having any limitations — freedom is having the best limitations for life transformation and realizations and destinations.
Hold these pages like a burning flame in the palm of your hands, like a begging, blazing key, like a bit of glowing sun that will grow you into freedom soaring on wind.
The snake is still. Your saving is here.
“God never guides us at some time in the future, but always here and now.
Realize that the Lord is here now, and the freedom you receive is immediate,” wrote Oswald Chambers. Rebekah echoes these words.
You are released.
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Excerpted from You Are Free by Rebekah Lyons, written by Ann Voskamp, author of The Broken Way & One Thousand Gifts.
Register Now for our next Online Bible Study: You Are Free
Good news for stressed-out, anxious, and striving people…
Anxiety can overtake us. Stress can overwhelm us. Pressure to please others can steal away our joy. Yet John brings our seemingly endless cycle of striving to a halt with these words: “If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36, NIV). What does it mean to live as one who is set free? How can our daily spiritual choices help us more consistently live within this freedom we find in Christ?
You weren’t made to keep up. You were made to be FREE.
Jesus whispers, I gave My life to set you free. I gave you purpose. I called you to live in freedom in that purpose. Yet we still hobble through life, afraid to confess all the ways we push against this truth, because we can’t even believe it.
Christ doesn’t say you can be or may be or will be free. He says you are free.
Dare you believe it? Join us in this study and discover what it means to live as one who is set free!
You can sign up now and get started right away! We’re making the companion study videos available to you for FREE. That’s right, all six sessions – releasing a new one every Sunday! Register and get the schedule, free downloads, and all the great bonuses!
Please be in with us? You’re needed and wanted and belong.
The You Are Free Online Bible Study (OBS) starts on March 26, so go register right now right here, and download all the wonderful freebies to get started on your journey to freedom.
Here’s the layout of the study:
Week One (March 26 – remains open): To Be Free
Week Two (April 2-8): Free to Confess
Week Three (April 9-15): Free to Begin Again
Week Four (April 16-22): Free to Feel
Week Five (April 23 – April 29): Free to Celebrate
Week Six (April 30- May 6): Free to Set Free
Catch-Up Week (May 7-13)
“Hold these pages like a burning flame in the palm of your hands, like a bit of glowing sun that will grow you into freedom soaring on wind.” ~ Ann
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Are you joining us? Leave a comment on our blog and let us know!